BBQ Cheesy Chicken Pasta Recipe

BBQ Cheesy Chicken Pasta Recipe: A Comforting and Flavorful Delight

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BBQ Cheesy Chicken Pasta is a perfect blend of smoky barbecue flavor, tender chicken, and creamy cheese, all combined with hearty pasta. This dish is a crowd-pleaser and makes for an excellent weeknight dinner that the whole family will love. The use of rotisserie chicken makes it a quick and easy recipe while still delivering a rich and satisfying taste. Let’s dive into the recipe and create a mouthwatering dish that’s sure to become a family favorite


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 2 cups Rotini pasta, uncooked
  • 14.5 oz can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 & 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup barbecue sauce
  • 1 medium rotisserie chicken (use all of the meat you can get off of it)
  • 2 cups Colby Jack cheese, shredded


Step 1: Prepare Ingredients

  1. Gather Ingredients: Ensure all ingredients are measured and ready to use.
  2. Shred Chicken: Remove the meat from the rotisserie chicken and shred it into bite-sized pieces. Set aside.

Step 2: Cook the Aromatics

  1. Heat Olive Oil: In a large skillet or saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
  2. Sauté Onion and Garlic: Add the diced onion and cook until it becomes translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Add the minced garlic and sauté for another 1-2 minutes until fragrant.

Step 3: Cook the Pasta

  1. Add Pasta and Liquids: Add the uncooked Rotini pasta to the skillet, followed by the can of petite diced tomatoes (with juices), chicken broth, and barbecue sauce. Stir to combine.
  2. Bring to a Boil: Increase the heat to high and bring the mixture to a boil.
  3. Simmer: Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover the skillet and let it simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until the pasta is tender and has absorbed most of the liquid. Stir occasionally to prevent the pasta from sticking.

Step 4: Combine Chicken and Cheese

  1. Add Shredded Chicken: Once the pasta is cooked, add the shredded rotisserie chicken to the skillet. Stir well to combine and heat through.
  2. Incorporate Cheese: Gradually add the shredded Colby Jack cheese to the skillet, stirring until the cheese is melted and the mixture is creamy and well combined.

Step 5: Final Touches

  1. Season to Taste: Taste the pasta and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper if needed.
  2. Serve: Serve the BBQ Cheesy Chicken Pasta hot, garnished with additional cheese or chopped parsley if desired.

Cooking Notes and Variations

Cooking Tips:

  • Pasta Cooking: If the pasta absorbs the liquid too quickly or seems undercooked, add a little more chicken broth and continue to simmer until the desired texture is achieved.
  • Cheese Melting: For a smoother cheese sauce, you can reduce the heat before adding the cheese and stir continuously to ensure it melts evenly without clumping.


  • Vegetable Additions: Add vegetables such as bell peppers, corn, or peas for extra nutrition and color. Sauté these with the onions for added flavor.
  • Spicy Kick: Add a diced jalapeño or a dash of hot sauce to the dish for a spicy variation.
  • Different Cheese: Experiment with different cheeses like cheddar, mozzarella, or a blend of your favorites for a unique twist.

Serving Suggestions:

  • Side Dishes: Serve with a side of garlic bread or a fresh green salad to complement the rich flavors of the pasta.
  • Toppings: Top with crispy bacon bits, green onions, or a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese for added texture and flavor.

Storage and Reheating:

  • Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Reheating: Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop, adding a splash of chicken broth or water if needed to restore the creamy consistency.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Can I use a different type of pasta?

Yes, you can use any short pasta shape such as penne, fusilli, or bow-tie pasta. Cooking times may vary slightly, so adjust accordingly.

2. Can I use homemade barbecue sauce?

Absolutely! Homemade barbecue sauce will add a personal touch and allow you to control the sweetness and smokiness of the dish.

3. Is it possible to make this dish ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the dish ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator. Reheat it on the stovetop or in the oven before serving, adding a bit of chicken broth if needed to maintain the sauce’s consistency.

4. Can I make this dish vegetarian?

To make a vegetarian version, replace the chicken with a plant-based protein such as tofu or tempeh, and use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth.

5. How can I make this dish gluten-free?

Use gluten-free pasta and ensure that the barbecue sauce and chicken broth you use are gluten-free.

6. Can I freeze BBQ Cheesy Chicken Pasta?

Yes, you can freeze this dish. Store it in an airtight container and freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

7. What other cheeses can I use?

Other good choices include Monterey Jack, Gouda, or a blend of Mexican cheeses for a different flavor profile.

8. How can I make the sauce creamier?

For an even creamier sauce, you can add a splash of heavy cream or a dollop of sour cream along with the cheese.

9. Can I add more barbecue sauce?

Yes, you can adjust the amount of barbecue sauce to your taste preference. Adding more will intensify the smoky flavor.

10. What if I don’t have a rotisserie chicken?

You can cook and shred boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs as a substitute for the rotisserie chicken.

BBQ Cheesy Chicken Pasta is a comforting, cheesy, and flavor-packed dish that’s sure to be a hit with your family and friends. Its versatility allows for easy customization to suit your taste preferences and dietary needs. Whether you’re making it for a quick weeknight dinner or serving it at a gathering, this dish promises to deliver satisfaction with every bite. Enjoy the rich combination of barbecue sauce, tender chicken, and creamy cheese melded perfectly with pasta. Happy cooking!

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healty meal, low carbs meals, keto meal

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